Nov 5, 2011

Mannum - Mannum - 6th Nov 2011

Saturday saw Geoff tackle the blocked drain in our Van, this had been annoying us for a couple of weeks, i had attempted to fix it by inserting some plastic coated wire cable down the plug hole but with no luck. My next attempt was to push some plastic tubing down as far as i could and then blow compressed air through it. This resulted in the water & air exiting the drain pipe but didn't fix the 'blockage'. I knew i needed to get down into the bathroom cupboard and remove the plastic T piece but my lack of flexibilty just would not allow me, fused spine and hips that no longer bend are limiting me and i cannot stand the frustration of not being able to do things, something i still have yet come to terms with.

Thank goodness for Geoff, he was able to get down and remove the T piece and as i thought it was blocked but not with food scraps but a plastic top off a small bottle had found it's way down the drain and was preventing the water escaping from the bathroom sink and causing an air flow blockage from the kitchen sink. With that removed the water now flows out quickly.

The next thing we tackled was the vans suspension, in particular the pivot block's. These are usually an easy to replace item, they are the main pivoting point on the simplicity suspension and will wear out depending on time and useage. I had already replaced both sides in the 1st year of owning the Van but at the same time i fitted some spring retainer brackets, these are i believe essential with this style of suspension and proof to me was that 3 years had passed since i had to 1st replace the pivot blocks. This time i had Geoff's help and we quickly had the Van jacked up and sitting on some axle stands and the suspension hanging freely, another 10 minutes or so had the suspension undone and removed from under the van. That is when the fun began, getting the stuck bolt of the pivot block out from the spring pack had us trying all sorts of things until we decided that the only option left was to dismantle the spring pack.

Changing out the Pivot Blocks

After working out what we had to do it didn't take long to get the old pivot block out and the new one in. It was just as well we decided to change them as they did not have much life left in the old blocks, had they stayed in much longer they would have damaged the face plate the pivot block sits on and that is a much harder job to repair. An hour or so later we had both sides replaced and just to show that Geoff really was fitter than i am, he then chopped up the fire wood. Of course that made me feel very worthy ......... Geoff & Vickie made a beautiful meal that night with a camp oven cooked Occo Bucco, Vickie cooked the vegies, we even had 'special' chilli garlic bread to accompany the meal, simply delicous!

Occo Bucco - Mmmm Yum

Sunday was a day to relax so we walked into town and the girls visited the shops, Geoff and i went down to the riverfront to check out what looked like a car show from across the river, it turned out to be the MG car club out on a run and lunch at Mannum. Some very nice examples of MG's dating back to 1933 to present day.

MG Car Club

Monday we were both going our seperate ways so Sunday night we went out for tea at the Mannum Community Club again for a meal. Next morning it was hugs all round as we left on our seperate ways, Geoff & Vickie down to the Fleurieu Peninsula and us further along the Murray River.

We have been through before and knew of a nice camp at Murtos Landing near Paringa and that was to be our camp for the next two nights, we had thought about ducking into Victoria to visit a mate but decided the distance for the time we had wouldn't work so we changed tack and the next night we spent at Thierys Sandbar out of Loxton.

Vickie relaxing at Murtos Landing on the banks of the Murray River

Both of these places are very pretty with great camps on the edge of the River, Our 3rd night was Ramco Point it was here i finally put a line in the river and was rewarded by two Carp not the result i was hoping for as the Carp are a pest in the river system and any caught are not allowed to be released back into the river, so i guess i did my small part in cleaning up the river.

Mick and Carp

The Murray River Paringa SA

Flood Level 1956 even the snorkel would not have helped

Camp Views

Next night's camp was at a place we had not been before, Swan Reach. The camp is only 500mts up from the Ferry crossing and we nearly missed it. Turning around we found a nice spot close to the water and away from the only other camper that was there. We had a lovely Morning and afternoon untill 5 vehicles came in and almost camped next to us, none of the occupants were speaking English and we found out later that they were from Serbia. They wern't a bad bunch of blokes, they kept to themselves but they did have crap taste in music, it seemed to sound like Serbian Marching music to my ears. I shouldn't complain because an hour later we had a bunch of Aussies camp the other side of us and stuck on their Doof Doof Music ..... I went to sleep wearing ear plugs that night.

Swan Reach our vista for the night

So where to next we thought? .... we had arranged to be back at Erin's on Wednesday and meet up with Geoff & Vickie on Thursday at a Van Park they would be staying in for a few days before we both head West to travel the Yorke & Eyre Penninsula's together before heading for home in December. We choose to come back to Mannum for a couple of reasons, one was to go to the Club for another meal, the other i cannot mention as it is a surprise .....

Two Vickie's

Mick & Geoff

Let me say .... Do Not Bother Camping At Mannum On A Weekend !!!

We arrived to be greeted by dozens of scattered beer cans & bottles from the previous night and being told the young'ns had been playing up all night. After our night with the Serb's and Aussie Doof Doofers we thought ...... great just what we need, but a visit from the local Police soon convinced the party animals to move on and we thought that would be the end of it so set up and settled back watching the river action. Late in the afternoon a family arrived and set up their tents, we were then entertained by the language of the Mother as she swore and cussed at her children. To top it off just as we were going to bed we were entertained again by a phone conversation where she cursed and cussed at [we guessed] another Daughter they had left at home who had broken a glass window and cut herself ....... hardly any concern shown for the hurt child but the window must have been very precious to them due to the amount of screaming and yelling going on.

Next morning we moved camp ..... 300mts away we have a nice possy to ourselves and all is well with the World.

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